Women’s Employment Rights

Whilst huge progress has been made to level the playing field between men and women in the workplace, there are still many challenges that women face every day in the working environment. This can range from being paid less than male comparators, to sexual harassment in the workplace.

Our women’s employment rights service provides women with advice and assistance on their rights, how to protect their positions and, if necessary, enforce their legal rights.

How Can We Help You?

Our specialist team is run by women who fully understand the difficulties faced by women in the workplace. We can provide support and assistance in all situations involving unfair treatment at work such as:

  • Discrimination (whether on the grounds of sex, pregnancy/maternity or caring responsibilities)
  • Equal pay
  • Flexible working
  • Sexual harassment
  • Family friendly rights
  • Unfair dismissal
  • Redundancy
  • Whistleblowing

Our services range from:

  • Providing general advice about your rights so you know where you stand
  • Helping prepare communications from you to your employer and responses you receive from them
  • Writing to your employer on your behalf
  • Guiding you through the grievance process
  • Bringing claims in the Employment Tribunal to enforce your rights for example in relation to equal pay, sex discrimination, sexual harassment and enforcing pregnancy and maternity rights.

We offer both fixed rate and hourly fees, contact us today for a free 20-minute consultation where we will discuss your current situation and advise you as to the next steps you should take.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have been working for your current employer for at least 26 continuous weeks you can make a request for flexible working for any reason.

To make a request you must do so in writing. Your employer then has the three-month decision period (which can be extended by agreement) within which to consider the request, discuss it with you (if appropriate) and notify you of the outcome.

You can make a request for a change to your employment terms if the change relates to:

  • A change to the hours you work
  • A change to the times when you are required to work
  • A change to the place of work (as between your home and any of the employer’s workplaces).

The change can be temporary or permanent.

Your employer can only refuse a request for one (or more) of the eight reasons set out in the legislation. These are:

  • The burden of additional costs
  • Detrimental effect on ability to meet customer demand
  • Inability to reorganise work among existing staff
  • Inability to recruit additional staff
  • Detrimental impact on quality
  • Detrimental impact on performance
  • Insufficiency of work during the periods the employee proposes to work
  • Planned structural changes.

You can complain to a tribunal if your employer:

  • Fails to deal with your application in a reasonable manner
  • Fails to notify you of the decision on your application within the decision period
  • Fails to rely on one of the statutory grounds when refusing your application
  • Bases its decision on incorrect facts; or
  • Treats the application as withdrawn when the grounds entitling your employer to do so do not apply.

You can only make one request in any 12-month period.

We can assist you with making a flexible working request by drafting a letter to your employer on your behalf. We can then advise you as to the next steps to take if your employer refuses your request.

Contact us for a free 20-minute consultation where we will discuss your current situation and advise you as to the next steps you should take.

The Equality Act 2010 implements the principle that men and women should receive equal pay for equal work.

Equal Work

Anyone employed under a contract personally to do work is entitled to contractual terms that are as favourable as those of a comparator in the ‘same employment’ of the other gender, if they are employed on a) equal work that is, like work; b) work rated as equivalent; or c) work of equal value.

Comparator

A woman bringing an equal pay claim must compare her contractual terms with those of a comparable man. The comparator in an equal pay claim:

  • Must be of the opposite gender to the claimant
  • Can be a current or previous employee, including a predecessor in the woman’s job
  • Must be (or have been) working ‘in the same employment’
  • Must be actual, not hypothetical.

Maternity and Equality Pay

There are also specific provisions aimed at protecting women’s pay during pregnancy and maternity leave. A woman who has taken maternity leave must not lose the benefit of any pay rise that she would otherwise have had, in calculating either her maternity pay, or her pay on return to work.

Furthermore, she must not lose out on any bonus that she would otherwise have received during her maternity leave, to the extent that it relates to the period before her maternity leave, any period of compulsory maternity leave, or the period after she returns to work.

Claims

Equal pay claims are usually brought in an employment tribunal, which can make a declaration of the claimant’s rights and require payment of any arrears of pay or damages for breach of a non-pay term. However, in some circumstances a claim can be brought in the civil courts.

We can advise you as to whether you may have an equal pay claim.

Contact us for a free 20-minute consultation where we will discuss your current situation and advise you as to the next steps you should take.

Leave It To Us...

For more information on women’s employment rights and to find out how we can help you, please contact us on 0345 646 0406 or fill in our online enquiry form and a member of our Team will be in touch.

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